Shopfloor innovation: Facilitating the suggestion and implementation of ideas

  • Axtell C
  • Holman D
  • Unsworth K
 et al. 
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Abstract

Despite increasing recognition of the importance of fostering innovation among shopfloor employees, little empirical research has been conducted on the topic. Moreover, within work psychology, studies have tended to focus on the generation of ideas (creativity) rather than on their implementation. This study examines the impact of individual perceptions of individual, group and organizational factors on both elements of innovation. It was found that the suggestion of ideas was more highly related to individual (personal and job) characteristics than the group and organizational characteristics; whereas the implementation of ideas was more strongly predicted by group and organizational characteristics. As expected, interactions were found between the number of suggestions made and group and organizational characteristics, demonstrating how successful implementation of new ideas requires both their formulation in the first place and an appropriately supportive environment. Analysis to explore which factors have the greatest impact on the innovation process was also conducted. The practical, theoretical and methodological implications of the study are discussed.

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